Posted Jan 7, 2021 by Anastasia Prokofieva

Small Business Upgrades for 2021: Ecwid's Best Tools for Growing Your Store

“New Year, new me!” Or should we say “New Year, new e-com tools”?

Even if you take New Year’s resolutions with a pinch of salt, it never hurts to pause and reflect on your small business’s practices. And figure out some goals for the coming year. Should you make the products in your storefront more noticeable? Do you use your marketing tools to their fullest? Have your customers been asking about new shipping and payment options?

Instead of making our 2020 recap about us, we’re making it about you. We’d like to make sure you tap into the best Ecwid tools we launched and updated this year. All of them were created with one goal in mind — to make YOUR business more successful. Let’s dive to our breakdown!

In this post, how-to:

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Leverage Email Marketing with Mailchimp

Email is a life saver for small business owners: it’s cheap to use, and less time consuming than other forms of marketing. To make it even more affordable and easy-to-use for Ecwid sellers, we partnered with one of the most popular email marketing platforms, Mailchimp.

Here’s how you can use Mailchimp tools to grow your sales:

  • Stay connected with customers by adding them to your email list automatically
  • Attract more potential shoppers via email capture pop-ups
  • Get more orders with emails — featuring products and discount coupons
  • Send branded messages with highly customizable email templates
  • Make your message relevant with audience segmentation. Need to reach out to those who ordered a specific item from you back in January? Easy!

email marketing campaign

With Mailchimp, you can let your customers buy your products right from emails

Learn more about Mailchimp for your Ecwid store.

Send Automated Marketing Emails

We know that small business owners often can’t afford a marketing team of their own to take care of all promotional needs. That’s why we launched an effective marketing automation tool — automated emails.

This handy tool allows you to automatically send tailored sales emails to your customers when they complete certain actions in your store. For example, when they add a new product to their favorites or complete a purchase. This ensures that emails are sent to the right person at just the right time to engage with customers and increase sales.

The best thing about automated emails? You don’t need to write copy, set up email campaigns, or segment audiences — it’s all taken care of! All you need to do is enable the automated emails in your Ecwid Control Panel.

e-commerce marketing

You can bring inactive customers back with an automated email that displays your bestsellers and an optional discount coupon

Learn more about the seven types of automated emails you can send with Ecwid E-commerce.

Get More Attention to Your Items with Product Subtitles and Ribbons

The easier it is to identify the product your customers are looking for, the more likely they are to complete their purchase. Now you have two extra tools to help you with that — product subtitles and product ribbons.

Product subtitles are short pieces of text that describe an item right on your product list. This description can be a special offer, an ingredient list, a list of available services, or any other information that a customer might need to make a purchasing decision.

Product subtitles to show what it's made of

You can use product subtitles to promote an offer or display ingredients

Learn how to highlight the value of your items with product subtitles.

Product ribbons are colored labels with text displayed over them. They allow you to draw attention to featured products on your storefront, whether it’s a bestseller, sale item, new product, or any other item that deserves a spotlight.

You can use product ribbons to highlight a sale item, services available, or a new product

Learn how to get more eyes on your storefront with product ribbons.

Accept Tips at Checkout

Tipping is a common practice when you’re out and about, but it’s not just for the offline world anymore. In our pandemic-stricken economic landscape, supporting small businesses is more important than ever, and many people would love an opportunity to do exactly that. So make sure you’ve enabled tips in your store.

With Ecwid E-commerce, you can enable the tipping option at checkout to let your customers express their appreciation for a positive experience with your business.

You can collect tips as an order percentage or a set amount. Customers can choose one of the variants (“No tip” is also an option) and complete the checkout process.

Ecwid Tipping Feature

You can edit the title and description of the tipping section as you like

Learn more about accepting tips in your Ecwid store.

Add Popular Payment Options to Your Store

A lack of preferred payment options is one of the primary reasons why shoppers abandon their carts. We can’t stress enough how important it is to give your customers more payment options — especially common and convenient ones they’ve come to expect at checkout.

Nothing beats Apple Pay and Google Pay, as they allow your customers to pay in a single tap. What’s more convenient than that? Set up Apple Pay and Google Pay to offer simpler payments and encourage more customers to complete their purchases.

With Apple Pay, customers don’t need to re-type their credit card details or shipping info

Learn how to enable one-tap checkout with Apple Pay.

Apart from convenience, don’t forget about customer preferences. Some people prefer card payments, some like to pay with an invoice, others use online banking methods. You can’t go wrong with having multiple payment options in your store.

In addition to the 50+ payment methods already supported by Ecwid E-commerce, you can accept payments with some of the most popular platforms in Europe: Klarna, PayPal Plus, iDeal, Giropay, Sofort, and SEPA.

With Klarna, you can let your customers pay for their orders via three options, including installment payments

These payment options are incredibly common among European customers. These days, they expect them at checkout. So, if your store is located in Europe, or you have lots of customers from European countries, those payment options are your ticket to more satisfied shoppers and less abandoned carts.

Learn more about accepting payments with Klarna, PayPal Plus, iDeal, Giropay, Sofort, and SEPA.

Upgrade Your Shipping Options

If you have an Ecwid store, you already know that you can connect it to major shipping companies. The best thing is that you can also display real-time shipping rates at checkout for some carriers. That means rates are calculated based on the order weight, parcel or product dimensions, and delivery address.

With automatic shipping rates, you can charge your customers the same rates you pay when shipping their orders, so your delivery costs are always covered.

We’ve already enabled your shop to display real-time shipping rates for such companies as USPS, FedEx, Australia Post, and Canada Post. But this year we also launched automatic shipping rates for Royal Mail and updated our integration with UPS. If you ship (or want to) with one of those companies, make sure to enable their real-time rates at checkout!

If you’d like to streamline your shipping routine even more (while also saving time and money), don’t overlook one of the most prominent Ecwid tools of the year. We’re talking about printing discounted shipping labels right from your Ecwid Control Panel.

No need to go to the post office and wait in line. Now you can automatically generate labels and calculate shipping costs right from your Control Panel. All you have to do is to print your labels at home, stick them onto your parcels, and drop orders at your front door for your postal worker to grab on their regular route (make sure you schedule a pickup with USPS).

Right now this service works only with USPS deliveries for the US. But we’re working hard to extend the service’s capabilities in 2021!

Buy and print a shipping label for domestic shipments via USPS in your Control Panel

Learn more about printing discounted shipping labels at home with Ecwid E-commerce.

Perfect Local Delivery

This year proved that offering delivery is vital for local businesses such as restaurants, grocery stores, and other stores as a way to stay competitive. That’s why we wanted to make managing local deliveries easier for you. So we launched not one but several tools for that.

Local delivery differs for many businesses. A grocery store might not deliver on Sundays. Small shops might only deliver orders over $40 to keep it cost-effective. To fine tune local delivery settings for your store and manage orders with ease, you can limit delivery by order total and operating hours.

What if you only deliver in a four block radius? Forget about zip codes or creating complex rules: simply draw the delivery area on a map with our tool:

Draw a delivery zone to limit where you deliver to

Learn more about limiting delivery by delivery zones, order total, and operating hours.

That’s not all! You can also ask your customers for a preferred delivery date (or date and time) at checkout, so customers know exactly when their order will arrive. No need for them to email or call you to get a delivery status update, or spend a whole day waiting anxiously by the door for a courier.

Customers can choose their preferred delivery time based on your business hours and order processing specifics (for example, order preparation time.) This is a life saver for businesses that offer local delivery or collect pre-orders for a specific date or time.

You can ask for both delivery date and time at checkout or for the delivery date only

Learn more about setting up delivery time picker for your store.

Manage Your Store on the Go

The Ecwid Mobile App is a simple way to have access to your store wherever you go. Add products, manage order and inventory, design your store, accept payments — you can do it all with our app. And when we say anything, we mean it! You don’t even need a computer to set up your online store. You can create your entire store using just our app!

The Ecwid Mobile App is a convenient, fast, reliable, and secure business tool, and guess what — we made it better this year. Our apps for iOS and Android now support Spanish, French, Italian, and German. Now you can do everything listed above in your preferred language!

Of course, we didn’t stop there. The Ecwid Mobile App improved a ton, and here’s just a couple of new ways you can use it:

  • Get help right in the mobile app. Use the “Get Help” section for an instant search across 600+ Help Center articles and video tutorials. And if you need a further helping hand, open the chat window to talk to our support ninjas.
  • Enable Caller Identification in the Store section to know which customer is calling before you pick up the phone. That helps to level up your customer service. For example, you can prepare orders for pickup faster when getting a call from pickup customers. You can also recognize loyal customers: the app displays a total number of orders of a caller.
  • Easily edit product images in the Ecwid Mobile App for iOS. You can drag and drop pictures to change the order of photos. Or, select multiple pictures or long tap to open additional settings for an image.

produts list in Ecwid mobile app

Editing products in Ecwid Mobile App

Learn more about using Ecwid Mobile App.

Connect Your Store to Online Business Tools

When you run a small business, you often need to work smarter, not harder. For example, eliminate repetitive tasks that take too much time. We have just the right tool for that!

This year we updated our integration with Zapier. It is an app and services connector that allows you to automate daily tasks that involve using Ecwid and 2,000+ applications. You can do it yourself, without coding or relying on developers to build the integration.

Here are just a few examples of how to make your workflow more convenient with Zapier:

  • Get a new WhatsApp message when you receive a new order
  • Send an invoice to QuickBooks or other accounting software when a customer buys in your store
  • Tweet about your new product the moment it goes live in your store.

Learn more about using Zapier for your business.

Sell Beyond a Storefront with Buy Buttons

The Buy Button is a tool that’s been around for some time. But ours got a recent revamp. Now you can get your products in front of customers by adding a shop button anywhere on a website: a homepage, a sidebar, a landing page, a blog, a gallery, and so on. You can even add Buy Buttons to your partner websites or onto Error 404 pages!

Apart from promoting products on your site or partner websites, Buy Buttons demonstrate every advantage of your product, and allow a shopper to buy it right away. When customers click a Buy Button, they are instantly taken to the checkout with various payment options and shipping methods.

Now you can also change the look of a Buy Button to match your website’s aesthetic. Choose from four available Buy Button layouts and customize it to adjust it to your needs.

You can see a preview of your Buy Button when customizing it

Learn more about selling with Buy Buttons.

Create an E-Commerce Site in WordPress via Ecwid for Elementor

WordPress users Elementor page builder for a reason. It is a free drag-and-drop page builder that allows you to create beautifully designed WordPress pages in no time, code-free.

With the Ecwid E-commerce plugin, you can add your online store directly in the Elementor editor. Whether it’s a whole storefront or a single product — drag, drop and start selling. It doesn’t get any simpler than that!

shopping cart wordpress

The Online store widget allows you to display the whole storefront on a page

Learn more about using Ecwid widgets in Elementor.

Never Miss an Update

We wanted to take a moment to highlight some of the biggest Ecwid E-commerce updates of the year. But of course, there are more tools, tweaks and improvements we’ve made in 2020. We just couldn’t fit them all in one blog post! However, there are several ways to always stay up-to-date on the latest and greatest:

Last, but not least, we’d like to say thank you for selling with Ecwid E-commerce! Rest assured, we have way more tools and services coming your way in 2021!

About the author
Anastasia Prokofieva is a content writer at Ecwid. She writes about online marketing and promotion to make entrepreneurs’ daily routine easier and more rewarding. She also has a soft spot for cats, chocolate, and making kombucha at home.
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